cover image One of Us Is Back (One of Us Is Lying #3)

One of Us Is Back (One of Us Is Lying #3)

Karen M. McManus. Delacorte, $19.99 (368p) ISBN 978-0-593-48501-9

Someone from the Bayview Crew’s past has resurfaced to finish what they started in this electrifying mystery, the third installment in McManus’s One of Us Is Lying series. After Addy, Bronwyn, Cooper, and Nate exonerate themselves in Simon’s mid-detention death, and Knox, Maeve, and Phoebe thwart a copycat killer’s lethal bout of truth or dare in the previous volumes, the trauma-bonded teens crave a carefree California summer. But history seems destined to repeat itself: when a digital billboard displays “TIME FOR A NEW GAME, BAYVIEW,” the gang wonders if they prematurely retired their “Murder Club” moniker, especially after one of them goes missing. Frustrated by the Bayview Police Department’s continued incompetence, the friends, their partners, and some unexpected allies join forces to survive their latest investigation. McManus skillfully seeds the kaleidoscopic first-person-present narrative—which alternates between several Bayview Crew members—with shocking secrets and a veritable school of red herrings, but the factors elevating this tale are the alchemy sparked by combining previous entries’ intersectionally diverse casts and the gratifying culminations of their emotionally complex arcs. Bombshell reveals unfurl alongside reflections on honesty, empathy, and cycles of violence, resulting in a soulful, high-stakes thrill ride. Ages 14–up. Agent: Rosemary Stimola, Stimola Literary Studio. (July)